Organized by Eddo Stern with Jason Brown
If the Internet is the Id of the culture, what is "Punch a Spice Girl" trying to tell us? MemeFest investigates the dream logic behind the seemingly meaningless digital propagation of images fads, and obsessions. Hatt Baby, Bush Monkey, All Your Base, Hamster Dance: are these examples of self-replicating digital folk art or vacuous self-referential sloganeering? Or has the very idea of "meme" itself already spun out of the reach of any intended meaning and into a vague stratosphere of empty celebrity? Hey! That's funny stuff! Memefest will divide its time between a lively discussion of memes (in their most general and most specific aspects) and themed screenings of some of these phenomena, focusing on their visceral entertainment value and far reaching cultural pertinence.
cocktails, games and other pleasures to precede and follow.
OF DISCUSSIONS & SCREENINGS+++++++
Cocktails and interaction
6:15-8:30 PART 1:
INTRODUCTION- Eddo Stern
DISCUSSION - The meme of "meme" - Deborah Forester
SCREENING - PARANOID MEMES
DISCUSSION - Conspiracy theory as meme - Jason Brown
SCREENING - CONTAGION OF THE OTHER
DISCUSSION - Orientalist memes - Eddo Stern
COCKTAILS + BIN LADEN GAMES
8:45-11:00 PART 2:
SCREENING - ANIMUTATIONS and FANIMUTATIONS
DISCUSSION - Meme as folk art? Meme as cultural resistance?- David Cassel
SCREENING - CELEBRITY TORTURE
DISCUSSION - Meme logic and viral marketing - Eric Saks, Jeff Herman
SCREENING - FAKELORE
BIN LADEN GAMES
ON 'MEMES' (Dawkins, 1976): REFLECTION OF A PART-TIME COGNNITIVE SCIENTIST
In light of the flooding use of 'meme' in our culture (e.g. 688,000 enteries in a google search) it can be seen as a self-reflexive expression of the concept as originally proposed by Richard Dawkins in a 1976 book titled The Selfish Gene. Its status as a 'scientific' concept is more questionable. The original text (and the climate in which it was written) makes the following topics relevant and worthy of comment -Cognitive semantics: on conceptual blending, Behavioral ecology: on the evolution of behavior, Distributed cognition: on social complexity, Scientific paradigms: on the need for CPR in Legoland, Humans & other animals: on baboons & car designers
Deborah Forster is a recognized expert on internet culture.
MEDIA DECONSTRUCTION: LAUGHTER AS A WEAPON
If there's a special circle in hell where celebrities are tortured, we'll give you a preview. As "new media" ascended, its first order of business was destroying the media that came before -- or at least, joining in a raucus chorus of derisive laughter. These webmasters didn't get mad, they got even -- in some cases, simply by giving pop culture enough rope to hang itself.
David Cassel is a recognized expert on internet culture.
THE OSAMA SHOW
After Hatt Baby, Mahir the Turk, and All your Base the internet was more than ready for 9-11. FOX and CNN were occupied with recycling their crash-bang footage, lining up the terrorism experts, and struggling with the big ethical question of the day (whether or not burning twin tower jumpers were "must see TV". Already thousands of 12 yr old fingers were racing to exact their online revenge, annointing OSAMA USAMA Bin Laden the new meme king. I is for Internet, I is for Irony, I is for Inglish, I is for Id...
Eddo Stern is a recognized expert on internet culture.
A "ZIG" CRASHED AT ROSWELL
"All Your Base Are Belong To Us" was a phrase that swept through technoculture and across culture at large in much the same way the "Majestic 12" conspiracy swept across the newborn web. Not coincidentally, both phenomena have structural roots in the paranoid origns of "hypertext" and the conspiratorial dawn of post-war information technology.
Jason Brown is a recognized expert on internet culture.
OH MY GOD, I'VE BEEN SLASHDOTTED!
Jeff Hermon gives a first hand account of Gameman, a giant Gameboy's tumultous journey from annonymus garage art project to internet meme superstar...
Jeff Herman is a recognized expert on internet culture.
PLEASE GOD, LET ME BE SLASHDOTTED...
Eric Saks will present his Tobacco Geezers intenet project, and discuss viral marketing and the strategic use of meme logic as a promotional weapon to embed ideology...
Eric Saks is a recognized expert on internet culture.